Aging in place has become the choice for many seniors and staying in your home can be more economical than living in a retirement facility. Studies show that it slows the progress of memory loss, strengthens social connections, and allows for more independence. The decision to aging in place brings the question, “What do I need to do to make my home safe and increase ease-of-use as I get older?” One of the first rooms many people decide to remodel is the kitchen. Since it is where accidents are most likely to happen, safety is a first priority in the remodel design. Practical solutions will make the kitchen safe and easy to navigate. The following are some safety remodeling tips. Kitchen cabinets should never be installed over the stove as they are too difficult to reach. Countertops should be lowered to accommodate wheelchairs or sitting while preparing food. Consider placing the sink near the stove – or install a pot filler so you don’t need to lug heavy pots of water very far. Shallow sinks will ease stress on aging backs from hunching over while preparing food or cleaning up. Rounded edges on all countertops can eliminate scrapes and bruises from sharp corners. Pullout pantries allow you to see everything without having to move “stuff” around. Drawers give you easy access to yummy snacks, canned goods and pet food for your constant companion. Build pullouts for small appliances to ease the strain on backs. Corner cabinets are a Lazy Susan’s... continue reading.
Thinking of renovating a residence so you or a relative can “age in place?” You’re not alone – AARP research shows that more than 80 percent of the U.S. residents above the age of 45 say they “want to remain in their own homes even when they need assistance.” With senior citizens make up the country’s fastest growing population and fewer Baby Boomers moving to retirement homes, aging in place retrofits are becoming the fastest growing segment of the home remodeling industry. However, the amount of design changes to choose from can be daunting – from remodels that are safety-based like no threshold shower floors and smooth walking surfaces that don’t pose a tripping hazard, to simple changes like modifying a kitchen surface to allow for sitting while preparing meals or adding drawer and cabinet pulls for easy gripping. These days technology plays a part as well, with innovations like vacuuming robots and smartphone controlled door locks, lighting and thermostats. For many seniors aging in place has resulted in greater health and happiness. It’s key that you work with a contractor you like who’s had experience with these types of redesigns and can help you prioritize a list that meets your needs and falls within your budget. Cook’s Kitchen and Bath is a safe bathing specialist and an authorized dealer of Best Bath Systems, an industry-leading manufacturer of accessible shower surround units and walk-in bathtubs. We are a general contractor with experience in aging in place remodels that include wider... continue reading.